While the world was still marveling at the performance of the #8 C. Brewer Motorsports Chevrolet in the 2019 Daytona 500, it was already time to head back to the drawing board. What will the ‘new’ NASCAR have in store for us in 2020? The industry has changed, and the fans have changed with it. The social distancing guidelines put in place during the pandemic mean that spectators will no longer be able to congregate in large groups. This will have a profound impact on how the sport is organized moving forward.
The way we celebrate moments in sports has changed too. With fans unable to flock to stadiums, the businesses that host them are looking for alternate ways to garner revenue. This is where the practice of selling specialty merchandise arises. Whether you’re a fan of NASCAR or not, you have to admit that the sport is incredibly entertaining. When the trucks roll around the track, it’s hard not to get caught up in the action. And what better way to engage with fans than by bringing out the merchandise?
This is where the practice of bringing out the merchandise for the trucks comes in. Instead of simply selling t-shirts and hats with the standard designs on them, teams and drivers will be able to utilize the internet to find the unique items that they need to fill out their wardrobe for the next racing season. The market for these items is already there, as most merchandise websites have rebranded their checkout processes to allow for online purchases during the pandemic. Additionally, many stores have transitioned to online sales.
These items will reflect the design aesthetic of their respective teams and drivers, and each item will have a story behind it. From the evolution of the Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series logo to Scott Hend’s famous trucker hat, each piece of merchandise will have a unique tale to tell. And, for the lucky fans who are able to make these purchases, each item will be a piece of memorabilia that they can cherish for the rest of their lives. It will serve as a constant reminder of that wild night in February when NASCAR returned to racing after a half-year hiatus due to the pandemic.
The Evolution Of The Monster Energy NASCAR Cup Series Logo
The original version of the #2 truck was designed by a man named Matt Owens, who also happens to be one of the most well-known truck graphic designers in the business. He was responsible for the logos and markings of the #5 and #6 trucks as well as several other Winston Cup Series teams. A couple of years back, Matt Owens took the reins on the #2 truck and completely reimagined it from the ground up. The new design is not only a nod to the teams’ traditional looks, but it also harbors a striking resemblance to the skull & crossbones motifs that were first seen on American Airlines flight jackets in the 1950s.
Not only is the artwork unique and representative of the teams that use it, but the font that Matt Owens decided to go with, Motorcycle Roadster, is also incredibly cool. When combined with the colors red, white and blue, it forms a vibrant scene that will take your breath away. Unfortunately, Motorcycle Roadster is a registered trademark of a company called Font Fabrik, so Matt Owens is stuck with the legal battle of trying to prove that he and his company didn’t come up with it independently. As it stands, Font Fabrik has filed suit against Matt Owens and his company, Great American Marketing. This is an unfortunate turn of events, as Matt Owens is a very talented designer whose work I have already mentioned, and I have a lot of respect for what he’s trying to do here. However, great design doesn’t always translate to great legal representation, especially when you’re not a registered trademark holder.
The Scott Hend Memorial Trucker Hat
Speaking of brilliant design and unique fonts, let’s discuss the infamous trucker hat that Scott Hend wears on the track. This is one of the most recognizable pieces of merchandise from the NASCAR races, and not just because of its distinctive shape or the fact that it’s sold at almost every NASCAR store. For me, it’s probably the most memorable design because of the story behind it. As many of you know, Scott Hend was a long-time fan of the sport who passed away from cancer a few years back. Before his death, he commissioned a piece of fan art that depicts his two favorite things: NASCAR and his beloved Cincinnati Reds. For the last couple of years, Scott’s wife, Kim, has been taking the art to various sporting events around the country in an attempt to give Hend fans the chance to say goodbye to their beloved Scottie.
It seems like a no-brainer for NASCAR to capitalize on this by selling t-shirts with the artwork on them. However, it wasn’t always so easy. Back in February, the Scott Hend trucker hat made its debut at the Daytona 500 and generated a good amount of buzz. But, when the merchandise was actually available for purchase, relatively few people had the chance to grab a Scottie before they sold out. This is why it’s such a fortunate coincidence that Matt Owens is now able to sell his original artwork. It means that he’ll get to do what he does best while providing a much-needed service for the fans who’ve been deprived of it during these past few years. I certainly hope that this lawsuit against Matt Owens doesn’t get in the way of him being able to support his family and continue doing what he does best.
The Evolution Of Charlotte Motor Speedway’s Logo
As previously mentioned, the market for specialty merchandise has changed how teams and drivers merchandise. While most are still sticking with the standard designs, others have decided to fully immerse themselves in nostalgia with logos that pay homage to the past. One of the most prominent examples is Charlotte Motor Speedway‘s (CMS) #19 NASCAR Cup team, which wears a striking resemblance to the old ‘Bullet Brand’ logo that CMS used to wear on the front of their race cars back in the day. This comes as no surprise, as the primary owner of this team is none other than Richard Petty himself. A couple of years back, Richard Petty Enterprises decided to rebrand itself as a sentimental move, and the rest is history. This logo makes me think of those halcyon days when we would anxiously await the starting of the season just to see what new designs CMS would come up with each year. Sadly, we can no longer flock to the pits to see those beautiful cars zoom by. But, at least we can look back with fond memories through online purchases.
The Logos Of The Famed ‘Triple Crown’ Winners
To finish up this article, let’s have a quick look at some of the other logos that are worth noticing. The NASCAR season is just around the corner, and teams will have the opportunity to promote themselves through merchandise in a variety of ways. One of the best things that could help them stand out is the use of one or more of their well-known racing logos in conjunction with a unique design. This allows for greater visual variety while also giving the merchandise a more polished and professional appearance. In some cases, the teams that use this approach have opted to go with a motif that evokes the traditional colors of their drivers’ suits. For example, the logo for the #34 Ford team is a combination of their primary color (red) and the number they wear (34).
Many of you will remember seeing this logo when Dale Earnhardt Jr. won the 2001 NASCAR Winston Cup. That was just one of the many triple crown victories that he was able to pull off during his illustrious career. Since then, his family has been a mainstay in the sport, constantly lending their support and appearing at almost every race. It would be cool to see them wear this logo on their clothing or maybe even their phones to show their support for Junior and the team. If you check out their website, you’ll notice that they have already begun to use this logo on their social media accounts. Hopefully, this will not be the last we see of this well-known logo.
There are so many unique designs and logos out there that teams and drivers can choose from. While most still opt for the safe option and go with the standard designs, others are taking the opportunity to have some fun with it. Hopefully, the fans will appreciate these efforts and be able to support these drivers and their teams through merchandise purchases. It’s time to fill out your wardrobe for the next racing season, and it’s time to express yourself through fashion. It’s about time that the ‘new’ NASCAR had some fun too. Who knows? Maybe Matt Owens will even let us have a logo update of our own before the season is over.